A provocative, wonderfully entertaining ridean irreverent, clear-eyed view of the way we live now.
Fritz Brubaker and his wife, Linda - an attractive couple in their mid-forties - have it all. Hes a toy-company executive and shes a million-dollar-a-year lawyer. Their children are in private school; they have a McMansion in a Boston suburb and a cottage on Nantucket. But their comfortable world is suddenly turned upside down when Fritzs companys stock tanks and he is arrested for insider trading. Lindas image-conscious ﬁrm suspends her. Their houses get repossessed. The kids go haywire. Watching the Brubaker familys lives unravel is the best way to see the stuff from which theyre really made.
This clever, very funny novel is a post-millennial snapshot of America that shows what happens to an economy built on greed when its chickens come home to roost. Its the story of a family gone wrong, and its attempt to reset its course.
The author of two successful thrillers, Sabin Willett delivers in this ambitious new novel the kind of witty social commentary we associate with Tom Wolfe, Jonathan Franzen, and Zadie Smith. But he writes in his own original voice, breaking new ground as he describes a changed world. Present Value is a provocative, wonderfully entertaining ridean irreverent, clear-eyed view of the way we live now.
A DELIVERY OF PRECIOUS CARGO
HEAT! The heat was steamy and suffocating, a humid pall that anticipated the dawn and left everyone a little sluggish, a little vulnerable. It was so hot that the day itself seemed dazed, as though it had got lost from July somehow, made a wrong turn off the calendar, then wandered fitfully in the ether until it stumbled into September. In the suburbs west of Boston that Monday morning, it was not autumn at all; there was no hint or whisper of New England charm to come, nothing of the crisp anticipation of a new school year. It was just a sizzlera white-sky mugging. And in the car-pool lane at the Chaney School, it was Cairo at noontime.
"Car-pool lane" was one of the schools many charming euphemisms, for there wasnt much pooling evident. The fewer the kids, the bigger the vehicle. The SUVs idled in rank, pumping out pizza-oven blasts of superheated exhaust, inching forward toward the alcove, where each would discharge ...
If you liked Present Value, try these:
'Hollinghurst writes harsh but deeply informed social satire from within, just as Proust did. He writes the best prose we have today'. Winner of the 2004 Booker Prize.
In her funny and moving new novel Smiley brings her extraordinary gifts, comic timing, empathy and emotional wisdom, to the seductive, wishful, wistful world of real estate, in which the sport of choice is the mind game.
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